Temple Events

Lunch Box ~ March 3

     The March 3rd Lunch Box at the Family Partnership Center will be sponsored by the 8th and 9th grades of our religious school, captained by parent Shaari Roland.  You can join them in cooking and serving a hearty lunch of franks and beans by bringing 3 lbs. of all-beef franks or a dozen pieces of fruit (bananas, oranges, and green grapes are especially popular) to the temple by Friday, March 1st.  If you leave the food in the temple refrigerator, be sure it is clearly marked with your name and “Lunch Box 3/3.”  You can also have fun (and get community service credit) by helping at the Lunch Box that Sunday from 11:30 to 2:00.   
     If you can donate food or help cook and serve, please let Shaari know right away by calling her at 223-7324 or emailing shaari@optonline.net.   

Judaica Shop Passover Sale ~ March 3, 10, 17

     Our Sisterhood’s Judaica Shop will hold its annual Passover Sale on Sundays, March 3rd, 10th, and 17th from 9:30 a.m. to noon in the East Chapel.  Featured will be seder plates, kiddush cups, Elijah’s and Miriam’s cups, matzo covers, and other special items to grace your Passover table, an assortment of haggadot and hostess gifts (including gift certificates to our Judaica Shoppe), as well as educational and amusing holiday items for children including Four Questions finger puppets, frogs, stickers, and sand art.  
     The shop is also open for business from Monday through Thursday from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and, in addition to the special Passover items, a variety of Jewish ritual items, mezuzot, tallitot, and books, and jewelry, gifts, cosmetics and art from Israel are available.  If you are looking for an item which is not on display or in stock, special orders can be placed for you.  For more information, contact Perla Kaufman at 914-456-7309 or membership@vassartemple.org.

Meditation Group ~ March 5

     The meditation group led by Linda Cantor and Ed Rosenberg will hold its next monthly meeting on Tuesday, March 5th from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. in the East Chapel.  At each session there is a sitting meditation, a walking meditation and either chanting or a short reading.  There will also be time for sharing and for questions related to the practice.   Both experienced meditators and those new to the practice are warmly welcomed.
     Please let office manager Sandi Rugar know if you are planning to attend some or all of the sessions (first Tuesday of each month) by contacting the temple office, 454-2570 or office@vassartemple.org.

Guest Speaker ~ March 8

   At our regular 7:30 Shabbat service on Friday, March 8th Shay Markovitch, DDS will speak about ” Growing Up Jewish in Israel: It Might Not Be What You Think.”  Dr. Markovitch was born and raised in Tel Aviv.  He came to the US a little over ten years ago for post-graduate work in dentistry, and arrived in Poughkeepsie in 2011 from Rochester, joining Vassar Temple shortly afterward.  He and his wife, Lori, also a dentist, have three young children.  You won’t want to miss his fascinating talk.

Shabbat Morning Service and Program ~ March 9

     Several members of our Jewish community have or had the honor and responsibility of serving their fellow citizens as elected officials.  After our Shabbat morning Torah service on Saturday, March 9th (rescheduled from Feb. 9), four current or past holders of elective office will reflect on the challenge of reconciling the demands of one’s constituents, the pressures from one’s political party leaders, and one’s own personal philosophy.  The speakers will be New York State Assembly Member Didi Barrett, former City of Poughkeepsie Mayor Sheila Newman, Poughkeepsie City Council Member Mary Solomon, and former New York State Assembly Member Joel Miller.
     Whether you are attracted by a moving Torah service, an interesting discussion, or a chance to socialize over kiddush, you are sure to get into the spirit of Shabbat at temple that Saturday. The dress code is casual and you are welcome during all or any part of the morning.
     We will begin at 9:00 a.m. with our usual interactive study of the Torah portion of the week with Rabbi Golomb.  A family-friendly Torah service will begin at 10:00 in the sanctuary, providing the perfect opportunity for parents to attend with their children and for adults who prefer daytime services to hear the Torah read.  At 11:15 we will be treated to our panelists’ presentation, and at noon we will enjoy a kiddush lunch together.  Plan to join us!

French Toast Breakfast ~ March 10

     Enjoy challah French toast with maple syrup, fruit, coffee and tea in the social hall on Sunday morning, March 10th from 9:00 to 11:00 for just $2 per person, payable at the door.  Relax over a delicious breakfast sponsored by our Sisterhood and Men’s Club while schmoozing with your friends!
     To aid in planning, please RSVP by March 7th to Perla Kaufman at 914-456-7309 or membership@vassartemple.org.

Adult Ed Course on Israeli Poet Yehuda Amichai ~ March 14, 21

A four-session course given by Rabbi Paul Golomb will examine the poetry of Yehuda Amichai.  The classes will be held on Thursdays, February 14th and 21st and March 14th and 21st, at 7:00 p.m.

Yehuda Amichai (1924-2000) was an outstanding representative of the second generation of Hebrew poets.  Born in Germany, he came to Palestine with his family in 1936 and fought in Israel’s War of Independence.  Many of his poems have been translated into English (and dozens of other languages).  The course participants will discuss selections from Amichai’s work, dealing with such issues as Jews, Judaism, Israel as land and nation, war, peace, and love.

The course is open to the community free of charge, and participants may attend as many sessions as they wish.  For more information, call 845-454-2570 or email rabbi@vassartemple.org.

Joint Shabbaton with Temple Beth-El ~ March 15-16

     This year the annual Joint Shabbaton sponsored by Vassar Temple and Temple Beth-El will take place during the weekend of March 15-16.  The guest speaker for the Shabbaton will be Rabbi Mychal Springer who is the director of the Center for Pastoral Education at The Jewish Theological Seminary.
     The Shabbaton will begin with a joint Shabbat service at Vassar Temple on Friday, March 15th at 7:30 p.m. during which Rabbi Springer will speak about “Prayer and Healing: Is Anyone Listening?”
     Rabbi Springer will offer a d’var Torah during the 10:00 a.m. joint Shabbat morning service at Temple Beth-El on Saturday, March 16th.  The service will be followed at noon by a Kiddush Luncheon and a discussion of the topic “Vulnerability as a Path to God” led by Rabbi Springer.   Please RSVP for the luncheon by March 8th by calling 845-454-0570 or emailing programs@templebethelpokny.org so the right amount of food will be prepared.       

Passover 101 ~ March 17

   Everyone can learn how to prepare for a seder which will be both meaningful and fun by participating in Passover 101.  You will be warmly welcomed at this free workshop at the temple on Sunday, March 17th from 10:00 to 11:30 a.m.
   We will sample various types of charoset and enjoy chocolate-covered matzo, as well as share recipes and other tips to make your seder easy and special.  We will also discuss how to set a seder table and plan a schedule which will allow even the host and hostess to relax.
    For more information, contact Perla Kaufman at 914-456-7309 or membership@vassartemple.org.

Tiny Temple Learns about Passover ~ March 17

     All preschoolers (age infant-5) and those who are raising them are invited to join in the fun at Tiny Temple on Sunday, March 17th from 11:00 a.m. to noon to learn about the wonderful holiday of Passover through crafts, songs, stories, and a special snack.  The adults will have an opportunity to meet others raising young Jewish children.  
     All are welcome to this free program regardless of Temple affiliation. Tiny Temple is held once a month during the school year, is always free of charge, and is sponsored by the Sisterhood.  To assist in our planning and have your questions answered, please RSVP to tinytemple@vassartemple.org.

First Night Seder at Temple ~ March 25

   A first-night Passover Seder, organized and led by members of the congregation, will be held in the temple social hall on Friday evening, March 25th, beginning at 5:30 p.m.    
    The short seder service will be engaging, interactive, and fun, appealing to both adults and children.  The evening will continue with a delicious four-course dinner, including the traditional ritual foods.
    This Vassar Temple event is open to temple members, family and friends and is priced just to cover anticipated costs.  The cost for each adult is $30 and for each child aged 5 to 13 is $10, with no cost for children under 5 and a maximum per family of $70.
    It is essential that you make your reservation by March 6th to allow for all the preparations that need to be made.  Reservations must be accompanied by payment and selection of an entrée (Rotisserie Chicken or Boneless Fish Filet in a delicate lemon sauce) for each person. To reserve your place(s), contact Alan Kaflowitz at alankaflowitz@yahoo.com or 229-1432.  Checks should be mailed before March 6th to the Temple, 140 Hooker Avenue, Poughkeepsie, NY 12601, with the word “Seder” on the memo line and the number of adults and children attending.
    This promises to be a wonderful way to begin your Passover celebration, as it was last year.  If you have questions, contact Sandra Mamis, Seder Event Chair, at seder@vassartemple.org or 914-456-3524.

Joel Hoffman Speaks about the Hebrew Language ~ April 4

   On Thursday, April 4th, at 7:00 p.m. our Religious School Director, Dr. Joel M. Hoffman, will present “3,000 Years of Jewish Continuity as Seen Through 3,000 Years of Hebrew.”  His talk will include an exploration of the remarkable history that links the Jewish people to its historic language and identity through time: the fascinating story of how Hebrew began, why almost every written alphabet today can trace its roots to Hebrew, how Hebrew developed, where the text of the Bible comes from, the relevance of the Dead Sea Scrolls and other ancient manuscripts, and finally how modern Israeli Hebrew developed.
    The entire community is invited to this fascinating free program by Dr. Hoffman, a respected local author, translator, and linguist.  

Teens Share their Washington, DC Experiences ~ April 5

The guest speakers at our 7:30 Shabbat service will be our high school students who attended the L’Taken seminar in Washington, DC in January.  They will report on their experiences, including lobbying their Congressional representatives.

Sisterhood Book Club ~ April 11

     Vassar Temple Sisterhood’s Book Club will discuss “Mudbound” by Hillary Jordan, a prize-winning novel set in the Mississippi Delta in 1946, on Thursday, April 11th at 2:00 p.m. in the Community Room of Collegeview Tower, 141 Fulton Ave., Poughkeepsie.
     City-bred Laura McAllan is trying to raise her children on her husband’s farm, a place she finds foreign and frightening.  When two young men return from the war to work the land, they form an unlikely friendship across racial lines which drives this powerful story to its tragic conclusion.  The book is available in paperback or through the local library system.
     Elaine Lipschutz will lead the discussion, to which everyone is welcome.  To RSVP or get more information, contact Doi Cohen at 462-6193 or dcohen1230@gmail.com